Question about highway riding with a tail bag - Kawasaki KLR 650 Forum
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post #1 of 33 Old 08-02-2008, 12:26 PM Thread Starter
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Question about highway riding with a tail bag

I have had a tailbag on my KLR for a couple months now, and I've noticed (since I've recently done much more highway riding) that when I get up to 70-75 mph, the bike starts weaving a bit, especially the front end. It's as if the tailbag catches the wind, and brings the rear down and lightens up the front. Does this happen to anybody else? I found that riding on the highway without it completely changes the ride. I want to take a 300 mile trip, but I need to pack for a few days, and can't take a trip that long while I fight to keep the bike from weaving. And I don't want to drive 60 mph! What is ya'lls take on my dilemma? Would a hard case on the back make a difference? I don't want the side cases...I don't want to pack that much stuff. I only want to carry a backpack and a tailbag.
Rick
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post #2 of 33 Old 08-02-2008, 03:38 PM
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You don't really say what tailbag or even what size it is. Does it stick out past the sides of your body? Do you strap it down well to prevent any flapping around? Any pics?

A soft bag with a lot of sag to it could catch some wind and act like a parachute brake I guess. If the tailbag is too large or packed to heavy, then it can cause the bike to be off balance being so far back on the bike.

You should get a lot of responses on here from some people that carry lots of weight on their KLR's including side boxes.

Try setting your rear shock to level 5 to keep the back end from squatting.
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post #3 of 33 Old 08-02-2008, 04:32 PM Thread Starter
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here are the pics of the tailbag on the bike

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post #4 of 33 Old 08-02-2008, 04:39 PM
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Sorry, but why that small of a bag would cause a major issue is beyond me. I'm sure somebody will jump in with advice.
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post #5 of 33 Old 08-02-2008, 05:41 PM
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Strange. Sounds like it's acting as a "spoiler" and putting downforce on the rear. My everyday bag is about the same size - maybe a little smaller. I've noticed no difference (but not done a whole lot of freeway time).

If that is the problem, then there's probably no fix except different bag - maybe a roll type bag bungeed lengthwise. Might be worthwhile to try a couple of small soft side bags without the tailbag and see what happens. I know you don't want them, but that might be your best option.

I second the recommendation to try increasing the shock preload.
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post #6 of 33 Old 08-02-2008, 07:05 PM
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HEY HEY!!! I just noticed something in the pics. You need to adjust your forks. The top of the forks should be flush with the triple clamp. I imagine the current position isn't helping much. It may only be a couple inches, but sometimes that's all it takes. See photo below for reference.


Last edited by TheWanderer; 08-02-2008 at 07:16 PM.
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post #7 of 33 Old 08-02-2008, 08:15 PM
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Good catch. Assume the rear isn't lowered.

Last edited by BIGIRON; 08-02-2008 at 09:54 PM.
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post #8 of 33 Old 08-03-2008, 12:17 AM Thread Starter
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Flush with the triple clamp? You have to walk me thru that one...I have no idea what You're talking about. I appreciate the responses though!
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post #9 of 33 Old 08-03-2008, 12:38 AM
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Look at the front forks near the handlebar on your photo and then the photo I posted. See the forks sticking up on your photo?
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post #10 of 33 Old 08-03-2008, 02:09 AM Thread Starter
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gotcha. I can see the difference. in our forks, but what kind of change would that make? I trust your judgement, but I am just trying to understand the reason as to why it would help. Thanks!
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